I remember when I was a little boy I used to wake my parents up at the crack of dawn on Christmas morning. They’d roll out of bed, bleary-eyed, and shuffle into the living room like zombies. I mention this because lately every day feels like Christmas in our house – except, you know, with none of the awesome presents.

Annie used to be good at sleeping in. Heather and I were able to wake up, start our day, then rouse the kid when we were ready. Unfortunately, for reasons unknown, Annie has started to get up earlier and earlier (and earlier). This glorious morning, for example, my little rooster was crowing at 6:22 a.m.

nighty night annabel
I’m awake! DADAAAAAAAA!!!”

Making matters worse? Annie has figured out that the medication Heather takes for her nausea puts her in a deep sleep, so she focuses squarely on me. Each morning there’s a little being standing on my side of the bed, tugging on my arm.

“Dada! Dada! Wake up!”

“Go back to bed, Sweetie.”

“Wanna go in the family room, Dada?”

“No. Dada’s still sleeping.”

“You’re not! You’re awake!”



“Snort, er, what?”

“Wanna go in the family room, Dad? Pleassssssse?”

At this point I usually pull Annie into bed and try to get her to sleep a bit longer, but after a few minutes of being smacked in the face by flailing toddler appendages, I give up and stumble out of bed.

Heather suggested that we buy a kid’s sleep clock to put in her room. These “sleep clocks” let children know when it is and isn’t okay to get up. One sleep clock, for example, remains red all night, then turns green when it’s time to rise. Heather seems confident that one of these clocks might work, but I’m dubious. I have a hard time believing a clock is going to stop Annie if she wants to get up.

It’s difficult to figure out why we’ve seen such a dramatic shift. Annie’s daily routine, including her bedtime, hasn’t changed at all. And while she now seems to get up the minute the sun is out, she used to sleep long past sunrise with no problem.

This may sound silly, but I wonder if it’s partially the fault of her cartoons. Yesterday Annie was watching one when the dad on the show told his kids that he’d be done sleeping when the sun came out. What the heck, cartoon? You couldn’t have said “done sleeping half an hour after the sun comes up?” Or “when Daddy’s alarm clock goes off?” Ugh. The people making that show mustn’t have kids.

In all seriousness, all of this early rising has done a number on me, and I basically spent all of yesterday fighting drowsiness. I think I’m about to get on Amazon and order about four of those sleep clocks. One of them has to work, right?